Oh baby, is it tempting to relocate near your new grandbaby. But is the right move?  

By Steven V. Dubin  

Now I finally know the magnetic pull of a distant grandchild.  

Our first grand baby, just born in early April, lives in Los Angeles, about as far away from the South Shore as you can get.  

I’d love to hold the little guy every day. Spend an entire day each week taking him on baby-and-me adventures.  

My wife and I discussed the option of relocating to LA (stands for Land of Auto traffic). Cooler heads may have prevailed.  

Relocating in retirement is a significant life decision that many people consider for various reasons.  

Here are some key aspects to consider: 

1. Cost of living: One of the primary reasons people relocate in retirement is to lower their cost of living. Moving to an area with a lower cost of housing, taxes, and everyday expenses can stretch retirement savings further. LA is not a panacea here.  

2. Climate and lifestyle: Many retirees choose to relocate to areas with a more desirable climate or lifestyle. This might mean moving to a warmer climate, closer to the beach, or to a location with abundant outdoor recreational activities. Again, LA does have some great weather, but it also is the Land of Atrocious architecture and constant construction.  

3. Healthcare: Access to quality healthcare becomes increasingly important in retirement. Some retirees choose to move closer to medical facilities or to areas known for their excellent healthcare services. Nothing beats Boston, even if my wife and I are planning for immortality.  

4. Proximity to family: For some retirees, being close to family is a priority. They may choose to relocate to be near children, grandchildren, or other relatives. A move would put us closer to our new grandchild and our oldest son and daughter-in-law. On the other hand, we’d be abandoning our other two adult children who live in the Boston area. 

5. Social network: Retirees often consider the social aspects of a new location. Moving to a community with a strong network of peers and opportunities for social engagement can enhance quality of life. As much as I loved summer camp, I’m not sure we need a community with “amenities” and activities. We are pretty active and tend to meet new friends on our own accord. 

6. Housing options: Downsizing or moving to a more age-appropriate housing arrangement is common in retirement. This might involve relocating to a smaller home, a retirement community, or an assisted living facility. There are many positives to these options, but we have already downsized and have a cozy, 900-square-foot condo.  

7. Taxes and financial considerations: Different states and countries have varying tax laws that can significantly impact retirees’ finances. It’s essential to consider the tax implications of relocating, including income tax, property tax, and estate tax. All you need to know about LA taxes is that gas per gallon hovers around $6. Most of that cost is taxes. 

8. Legal and administrative factors: Moving to a new location often involves navigating legal and administrative processes, such as selling or buying property, updating legal documents, and transferring licenses and registrations. This is just a general hassle, a part of life.  

9. Emotional adjustment: Relocating in retirement can be emotionally challenging, especially if it involves leaving behind familiar surroundings, friends, and routines. It’s essential to prepare for the emotional adjustment and actively seek out opportunities to build new connections and activities in the new location. It’s always exciting to discover a new area, but living in downtown Plymouth feels like a comfortable, old shoe.  

10. Long-term planning: When relocating in retirement, it’s essential to consider long-term factors such as accessibility, mobility, and healthcare needs. Choosing a location that can support changing needs as you age can help ensure a smooth transition and a fulfilling retirement lifestyle. That is a pretty big ball of wax. You have to be very committed to take the leap.  

Overall, relocating in retirement requires careful consideration of various factors, including financial, social, emotional, and logistical aspects. It’s essential to weigh the pros and cons carefully and plan thoughtfully to make the transition as smooth and enjoyable as possible.  

I think we’ll stick to occasional visits and lots of Zoom calls.  

If you know of a senior who is doing something interesting with their retirement, I look forward to hearing from you! Please email me at SDubin@PRWorkZone.com  


Steven V. Dubin is the founder of PR Works, a lightly used public relations firm based in Plymouth which helps small to mid-sized nonprofit organizations and for-profit companies navigate the overwhelming options of advertising. Steve lives in Plymouth with his wife, Wendy. He is a contributing author to “Get Slightly Famous” and “Tricks of the Trade,” the complete guide to succeeding in the advice business. He recently authored “PR 101,” an E-book.